Everyone has those days! Tyra Banks knows her first season hosting Dancing With the Stars wasn’t perfect — but she doesn’t think the backlash is entirely fair.
“I’ve been doing live TV probably since I was 17, 18 years old,” the former America’s Next Top Model host, 47, said during an appearance at the Television Critics Association press tour on Thursday, August 26. “Live TV is pretty normal for me. I actually prefer it because when you tape, you’re taping something for 12 hours, and the director keeps saying do it over and over again. Whereas live, you’re over it pretty fast.”
Banks went on to reflect on the reaction to the “famous debacle” that took place during a season 29 elimination. While reading results to the remaining DWTS competitors in October 2020, Banks was forced to backtrack after she accidentally announced the wrong couple’s names.
“I mean, people see my face. They don’t know there’s things in my ears, and there’s directors and things, people saying stuff to me,” the Life-Size star said on Thursday. “And so … the world sees me. They don’t understand that there’s a whole thing going on.”
The California native admitted that part of being in the entertainment industry is learning how to “take darts” and stand up to critics.
“The world is angry at the talent. But there’s a whole control room and things happening and craziness going on, and I’m fed certain things, say certain things that I’m told. But it is what it is,” Banks explained. “We are a team. And sometimes you have to take darts for the team, and I took them. And will continue to take them. … I was blamed for it, and it wasn’t me. And I think that’s very important to say.”
Banks joined the DWTS team in June 2020, replacing longtime hosts Tom Bergeron and Erin Andrews. When the ABC ballroom competition returns for season 30 in September — with Suni Lee and JoJo Siwa among the celebs taking the stage — Banks will be back at the helm.
While some fans were initially wary of the hosting change, Banks brushed negative comments aside. In September 2020, she told Us Weekly exclusively that making mistakes was just part of the process.
“If I didn’t want to mess up, if I wanted to be perfect, I know how to do that,” she noted. “There’s a very clear way as a host that you just read the words and you’re perfect and you know exactly how to do that. But when you’re relaxed and you keep it real, the mess-ups happen. … It’s just normal and it keeps it real.”
Though the Modelland author’s first season was a little rough around the edges, plenty of DWTS pros came to her defense, including Keo Motsepe.
“Dancing With the Stars is not — I always say this — it’s not about one person. It’s a production,” he told Us in April. “There’s so many people that are behind the scenes that people don’t know about. … We all come together and that’s what people get to see every night. … [It was] her first season. She did a good job, you know, and I think people at home have to allow the change.”
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Dancing With the Stars returns to ABC Monday, September 20, at 8 p.m. ET.
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